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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  October 16, 2009 11:00pm-12:00am EDT

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it is hard enough to recover to fight past pain and to stave off death if just for a season, or a week or a day, it is so hard that eventually, for you, for me, for this president, for these blue dogs, for these protestors, it is so hard to recover that for all of us there will come a time when we will not recover. so why are we making it harder? on behalf of both of the olbermanns, good night and good luck.
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> good eveninging. president bush appeals for stability and he says this -- >> you're a couple of sick puppies. >> you know who he was talking about? a response from keith olbermann and from me, in just a moment. and new video evidence to help us fact check our rather explosive tim phillips interview from last night. and governor eliot spitzer is here to talk me down, or not, about yet, another goldman sachs executive getting yet, another important government job, cracking down on firms like goldman sachs. all that, plus the barfing balloon boy and radioactive rabbit scat all coming up this hour. we begin with president obama's trip to texas. president bush, the elder using that trip as an occasion to take a weird, unexpected swipe at me and keith olbermann. occasion of the meeting of the presidents was the 20th anniversary of president bush's thousand points of life call to
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service during his inaugural. tonight in texas, both presidents gave speeches about the importance of volunteerism and public service. the political subtext of this visit is starting to overtake the official text of why these presidents got together. it may be because this time last year, a young conservative group at the sight of today's event, texas a&m sponsored an anti-obama carnival in which they asked passers-by to throw eggs at a photo of mr. obama. after that same group announced plans to protest president obama's arrival on campus, mr. bush published an open letter on the front page of texas a&m's college newspaper. essentially calling for civility on the occasion of this visit. this is where the story gets weird. in a follow-up interview with cbs radio today about that call for civility, the former president, out of nowhere, volunteered his own theory on where the breakdown in civil discourse is coming from. >> i don't like it. i think the cables have a lot to do with it. i think back when i was
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president we had tons of criticism but it didn't seem day in and day out quite at personal as some of these talk show people. and it's not just the right. it's plenty of people on the left. if you want me to name a couple names i'll be glad to do that for you. >> go ahead. >> keith olbermann and rachel maddow. here's a couple of sick puppies. >> comment? while trying on his adorable halloween costume, my puppy said, rrrr? sorry. why is the former president calling me and keith olbermann sick puppies? i honestly do not know, but here's what he said next. >> and the way they treat my son and treat anybody that's opposed to their point of view is just horrible. >> joining me now by phone is keith olbermann. he is sick, as in ill tonight, but not a sick puppy.
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keith, what do you make of all this? >> i think i can speak on your behalf we're saying grateful for the former president's concern about our health. the -- it's easy to miss the irony here. what he's complaining about in terms of personalized complaint about other politicians is current era of it, name-calling. he's the father of it. i don't mean he's the father of george w. bush. he's the father of the process that took us to the place we are now. he's the man who employed roger ales. they are the men who ran the willy horton ad against dukakis. he and ils are the people that played the scam on dan rather. so it's very ironic to hear
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george h.b. bush from his lofty perch, with anger in his voice against you and me and mispronouncing your name which adds to his credibility. just ignoring the fact, you don't like this? it's your responsibility. you fix it. you started it. >> it was interesting to me, keith, he was eager to volunteer us by name. he actually said, if you want me to volunteer names i've got them for you. i wonder if this is seen by the bush family as some sort of return fire against the current white house for taking on fox news recently? >> i don't know. i mean, my assumption is -- and this is where i give the former president something of a pass on the. you'd have to -- you'd have a blind spot. if your son was president of the united states, you'd have a blind spot about how well or pop purely he did. if your son was goerch w. bush with blind spot would be the size of a galaxy. and you'd have to assume that criticism of him must necessarily be wrong and must necessarily be personal as opposed to being predicated on what actually happened during that administration. i mean, we've seen president bush get weepy talking about jeb in a presidential context and
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the way things turned out, there's got to be some weird mixture of psychology going on there. i don't think it's net necessar retributive. i don't know that mr. bush is any more pleased with what fox news became than anybody else is. but i don't know that it's necessarily that. it's so strange for him to asail name calling and then call us names. but we saw that -- mr. mccain did that last year, too. there's something about people who start a certain ten for of give a certain tenor to american political life. this is over the centuries, not just recently. but there's something about this. when they take us down a path, if anybody else goes down that path that disagrees with them they are startled, outraged and take huge umbrage because only they are correct. i think that's what president bush did. it's a sad legacy to a sad president si. >> the only instability they
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recognize is that. >> at least think spelled my name right. >> keith, thanks for taking time to join us on your night off. i appreciate it. [ coughing ] >> feel better. >> thanks, keith. joining us now, we have the pulitzer prize winner joining us and the author of "the way of the world" the story of truth and hope if the age of extremism. ron thanks for coming on. >> you sick puppy, you! >> you covered both presidents bush extensively. i have to ask you. based on what you know about the elder president bush, of all the people in the institutions he could have singled out as the root cause of the breakdown in civility in this country, why do you think he singled out the cables and me and keith specifically? >> well, actually, i think when you read the whole thing and you see the whole thing, i think that you and keith thing at the
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end was a bit of a throw-away. you've seen this from the bush presidency. he makes a coherent case and throws a kind of zinger, a kind of anned a ad homonym attack, personal, and that's not really the point. i think really what he's talking about here is fox news. the fox news/rush limbaugh/glen beck thing and how they've stolen the republican party. that's george hw bush says, wait. that's my party. these are not my people. if you look at the whole sum of what he's saying, i think in large measure it's a way to try to distance old, traditional republicans from the new republican party. and i think that you and keith are just throw-away lines to show, say, i'm even-handed and it happens on the left, too. >> i have -- i get asked a lot of questions about media and opinion because of the different jobs i've had. as the right has become more extreme, as fox has become more extreme, particularly with their host mr. beck now, i've been
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accused of being more extreme than i've ever been accused of before. i haven't changed but i think people are looking for parity as a way of saying there's a sort of incivility on both sides, because that's more convenient political point to make, saying that one side is way more out of line than anybody else has seen. >> i think george h.w. bush understands he has some responsibility for this. he's probably speaking a little bit out of guilt. lee atwater and roger ales twr start of modern-day attack politician which has spread 24/7. you look at fox news and some of the guys there, it's the willy horton 24/7. they're at the start of that in a kind of ends-means play in the way george h.w. bush engaged deeply in. i don't care how you get there. just get there. win first. the rest is for later or never. that's really started in george h.w. bush's time. i think he's probably troubled as many are, at how it has grown and spread deepened and widened in a way i think this is his way
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of saying, those guys who are are attacking this president, which is what he's talking about, obama, he says it's unfair. those guys are not my people and that's not republican party. i'm not a fox news guy. that's what the old president is saying. >> ron, one of the reasons i want to talk to you about this tonight is because i think you're very good, better than anybody i know at extrapolating the day's events into the big picture of american politics and world politics. and at the aggie campus, he put out this call for civility and the response took the form of protestors posing in a grim reaper costume calling the president a socialist. pasting a hitler mustache on to the president's picture. from the big picture view, do you think at this point we should give up and see this as the new normal in american rhetoric? is it worthy in the big picture to see this as really divisive and a distance from what we've
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done in the past? >> this is the shrunken hard core of the conservative wing of the party. it does, actually, have a consequences that are quite startling. there's a lot of people here, this is not just a frank group. this is a significant cohort who are engaging in a kind of vi tup -- vituperative confrontational posture and language. this has often led to trouble in american life and certainly, in american politics. and i think that right now what you find is a kind of battle inside the republican party saying, good god! that's not us.
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but the fact is, the louder the better in this environment we're in. and this community, this group, you know, again, glen beck and the gang, they are hijacking what we once called the republican party and in a way, are leading people to say, act now. win back your country. take it back. words are of real confrontation which really don't fit with discernible reality as most people know it. most person americans of whatever party. this is a dangerous trend. no doubt. >> pulitzer prize winning author, you're a smart guy. thanks for joining us, ron, on a friday night. good to see you. >> nice to be here. last night i interviewed tim phillips, director of corporate-backed sort of fake grassroots organization called "americans for prosperity." and in that interview, things got rather heated. and i have to tell you, because we're making this about you and me, that i personally think that you and the folks that do what you do are a parasite that gets fat on americans' fears. after letting some time pass today, i have not changed the way i feel about that at all.
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but something mr. phillips tried to muddy on the program requires clarification and i will try to clarify it with video evidence for you next. (announcer) regular kool-aid. goes almost three times further than soda. kool aid. delivering more smiles per gallon. now yourard comes with a way to plan for what matters to you. introducing blueprint. blueprint is free and only for chase customers. it lets you choose what purchases you want to pay and those you split... interest...with full pay. you decide how to pay over time. if having a plan matters. chase what matters. eate your own blueprint at chase.com/blueprint. even when he thought he might lose his job. he says he doesn't think about it much... but i don't believe him. i think he does it for us. sometimes doing the right thing is just making people happy.
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there's new information to report tonight about one of the country's most aggressive opponents of health reform. grassroots group, "americans for prosperity" who's president, tim phillips we hosted on the show. they've been barn storming through parts of the state as sort of its "hands off my health care" bus tour. i interviewed mr. phillips last
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night in the hopes of trying to clarify who he is and who's funding him to do campaigns like this. to clarify who this group represents when out in the country saying they're just grassroots folks against health reform. my interview received a lot of attention today, particularly for the way it ended. one thing that happened in the heated closing of our interview has been factually clarified and i think it's important to make sure we get this on the air. here's what happened last night. i just want to know who you are and i want america to know. i have to tell you, because we're making this about you and me, is that i personally think that you and the folks that do what you do are a parasite that gets fat on americans' fears. >> that's very hurtful and disappointing. >> i know, and i know this sounds horrible and i wanted to set it up -- >> and you're wrong in a
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disparaging a lot of americans that are out there fighting a good fight, rachel. >> it's different because you're being paid to do it. what you're doing -- >> guys like me and david -- >> when you signed on you said some pretty disgusting things in the past. guys that have paid you to do it. now you're pushing stuff that's as disgusting and the only difference is we don't yet -- >> disgusting how? that's a fascinating way to describing it. >> to say that obam that care is like pol pot and -- >> i haven't said that. >> but your speakers have. that event was co-sponsored by us. you want to pick one out of 600 rally, i asked you to come with us on the road and see these people. >> i don't want to promote you, tim. i think you're getting fat, literally financially fat on american's fears and -- >> what are you getting fat financially to do, rachel. >> i'm trying to tell people who you are. >> attacking us, please? >> i hope people stop falling for your shtick and stop being afraid and your industry that takes money to do this and scares people to make money, i think republican and
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corporate-funded thing, a hope the industry, proverbally, starves so we can stop by afraid. i feel like i have to say it to your face because it's burning under the surface. i'm mad about what you do. i think you're really bad for the country. >> you have every right to think that. >> so in the midst of all of that, something was mentioned very quickly there that's important and we need to clarify. you heard tim try to muddy the waters about something his group, americans for prosperity, has been attacking me and this show's reporting about since we first had him on the program, something that happened in pueblo, colorado, this summer. a speaker at one of these "americans for prosperity" anti-health care reform rallies compared the reform plan to pol pot and hitler and the final solution. we played this tape before, this speaker on the show and americans for prosperity has not been happy about it.
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>> if this new obama care program comes to fruition, when you reach 65 and every five years thereafter, you're going to have a counseling session with some federal airhead. part of this process is called end of life counseling. and part of the end of life counseling can be an end of life order. what does that mean? end of life? another word for that is death. order. what's another word for that? acceptance. now, you folks review with me a little bit as i recall, stalin in 1920s issued about 20 million end of life orders for his fellow russians. pol pot did it during the vietnam war. he ended -- issued about 2 million end of life orders. and adolph hitler issued 6 million end of life orders. he called his program the final solution. i kind of wonder what we're
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going to call ours. >> the last time we played that tame on this show americans for prosperity went after me and this show on line. the policy director asserted that the entire video was a fraud. he said it was a video created by the union sciu and that what it showed was definitively not an americans for prosperity event. it was not an event. he's wrong and there are attacks on me for airing that footage are also wrong. let me make this clear. no matter how they try to muddy the waters and no matter how they try to attack me for saying it and how uncomfortable it makes them about what their trying to do, scaring the americans, the pol pot hitler reform is really genocide. it was speaking at an americans for prosperity event. you want proof? here's the bloody red hand print bus rolling up. here's another speaker being introduced at the same event.
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>> there's a fellow co-worker of mine and a man who's been working hard on this issue, jeef crank come on up here. >> who is jeff crank? he's the colorado state director for americans for prosperity. here's jeff crank rallying the crowd at that event. >> we've travelled in that bus today, we started off in fort collins this morning 37 we went to greeley and we had 350 in greeley. right now here in pueblo, we're at 151 people who have signed the petition. >> we traveled in that bus to fort collins and now here in pueblo. you want to see the calendar from that day? fort collins. greeley. now we're here in pueblo. and who was one of the speakers after mr. crank at that event? it was mr. pol pot hitler final solution dude. he wasn't just some guy that grabbed a mic at the event.
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he was an official speaker. jeef crank, their colorado director was reportedly standing in the wings as mr. pol pot was waxing poetic about how health care reform is like the holocaust. we give our thanks to the video photographer clarifying that no matter how much they want to disown it this is what they are doing around the country. scaring americans about health reform and americans for prosperity mr. phillips is right. they have every right to do what they're doing and i and every other american has every right to ask who they are representing when they do these things. they're not disclosing this. they're trying to scare meshes about health reform. they are disavowing their own tactics when they get called out on them. the first amendment is paramount. you can say whatever you want to say in this country and try to exploit and scare americans for any cause you thing you can ring a profit out of. but we have every right to
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if there's one thing that we've learned in the last year of the financial catastrophe in the united states is that it's good to be goldman sachs. george w. bush's treasury secretary, hank paulson, former ceo of goldman sachs. under paulson when wall street started exploding, it was decided that two of goldman's biggest competitors, lehman brothers and bear stearns would
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be allowed to fail. meanwhile, aig would be rescued, which was happy news for goldman sachs since aig owed goldman a ton of money. when the troubled assets relief program, t.a.r.p., was established, former goldman and ceo treasury secretary, hank paulson, tapped another employee to be in charge. when president obama replaced paulson with tim geithner, mr. geithner chose a chief of staff who has been a lobbyist for goldman sachs. in march, president obama picked another goldman veteran to head up the commodity future's trading commission. it only took goldman a year to turn its $70 billion in taxpayer generosity of last year into a $3 billion quarterly profit right now. its obonus pool for its executives has never looked fatter. the cherry on top in the news today. the securities and exchange commission, the supposed top cop on wall street, who missed everything from from the subprime mortgage scam to bernie
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madoff, has just named a new chief operating officer of its enforcement division. the new top cop to keep wall street in line, his name is adam storch. he's 29. and he comes from goldman sachs. surprised? joining us now, the man once known as the real sheriff of wall street, former governor of new york, eliot spitzer. thanks for come something. >> pleasure to be here. 29? i'm feeling old right now. >> am i make too much of goldman's influence in washington? >> no. you are not. this is a real problem. it is a problem not just because it is goldman vis-a-vis citibank or morgan stanley or any of the other investment banks, it's because wall street controls the treasury department. if you look at the geithner logs, if you look, who does they speak to? who does he listen to? it's exclusively the voice of wall street. goldman thinks it's preeminent. they're not as smart as they think they are. they make money because they dominate that street through a lot of different mechanisms, some of which they should not be proud of. but the problem is, tim geithner doesn't call the consumer federation of america with the
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same frequency that he calls goldman sachs. goldman has the ear of everybody. their money has bought access. you know, the joke running around the street is goldman was going to do an lbo for the treasury department. they print money. we print money. everybody will come out ahead. this is a problem. >> aside from the consumer federation of america, who are the other stakeholders that the treasury should be listening to? >> other enforcement agencies. i can tell you the treasury department does not speak, given the sec, fdic, all of them failed. how many times does the treasury department call the 125i9 attorney's general? i'm biased. i thought we made good cases. did they ever pick up the phone and say, what do you think? has geithner ever reached out to that universe of people saying what are we missing? what is going on in the street? with have they spoken to those that represent workers?
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how do we create jobs? small business owners -- we went through an era where we went through the financialization of our economy. all we did was the razzle dazzle of wall street and it killed us. we didn't invest in the intellectual capital we needed. i would rather he talk to silicone valley than wall street. it's creative intellectual genesis where they create the next generation of companies. wall street they just move money back and forth. and they think they're creating value. it's fictitious. that's not wall street. >> when we look at not only re-regulating wall street, when we look at recreating our economy so this did you want keep happening are we building smart enough, tough enough, empowered enough cops? >> no. >> the enforcement system? >> rachel, i may be dead wrong but i think we've been rearranging the deck on the titanic. everybody knows the peter princip principle. you get promoted to the point of your incompetence. in washington we have the peter
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principal on steroids. the people at the top of the regulatory agencies that completely failed created the crisis are now using this very same crisis they created to argue for more power for themselves. it is the peter principal on steroids. the team in charge of these groups and agencies are still there. i hate to say it. they there very ones -- and i don't mean to pick on tim geithner. decent guy and i think he's dead wrong about what he's doing. tim geithner was in charge of the new york fed during the entire period this bubble was created. he received he has never been a regulator. he -- i think we are not yet solving the problem. we have enough power if people have the will to use it. the fact that when you see these laws being whittled down and agencies still not asking the hard questions -- too big to fame is still there. too big to fail has not been confronted. the banks are not lending. socialized risk. privatized gain. none has changed. the banks are still using all the taxpayer money to create proprietary trading funds. now wonder goldman makes $3 billion. they go in to use all the
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liquidity to pump up the equities' mark to get a return. of course they do well. anybody could do well in that context. we've not said, do something that helps the economy. the one person down there on regulatory side who isn't unfortunately where he should be, who gets it, is paul volcker. paul volcker who testified a couple of weeks ago saying the banks should not be doing the sorts of things they're doing with guaranteed deposits, with federal assistance. they want proprietary trading and want hedge funds, let them go off and do it on their own. if we give them the money make sure they use it for reasons that will boost the economy and it's not happening. >> still have a fox in the hen house problem. we need to come up with a plan to defend the henhouse. thanks for coming. >> thanks for being here. especially with the yankees game going on. . >> yeah, i have to go check that out. >> that's after your show. >> thank you. i have to tell you i'm excited about tonight's moment of geek. it's not about the yankees game. it involves rabbit pop and plutonium. somebody finally connected the
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during the break we could have chose on the kill the radioactive rabbit poop store
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but we did not, writer nathan hodge will join us. first a couple of holy mackerel stories. today's saw yet another terrorist attack in pakistan. we're now up to six coordinated terrorist bomb attacks in 11 days. with the death toll in pakistan of about 150 people. the pakistani taliban is claiming responsibility for these attacks. but they are also mad about the way they're being covered. foreign policy.com noticing a taliban kuhn communique sent to a pakistani press club this week which said, quote, if the media does not stop portraying us as terrorists, we will blow up offices of journalists and media organizations. you got that? if you don't stop calling us bombers we're going to bomb you. if you don't stop calling us terrorists we're going to blow up your office. file this unclear on the concept, pakistan, terrorism. and iraq and afghanistan veterans of america just got a say-what reaction from the pentagon on their report about women in the military.
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the 11% of iraq and afghanistan vets that are women say female service members face a huge risk of sexual assault and sexual harassment from their own coal l colleagues in the american armed forces. the toll of the experience of these wars is also tougher in some ways on the female soldiers. the divorce rate for women troops now almost three times the divorce rate of our male troops. when asked for our response to those disturbing stat a pentagon spokesman said they were alarming and said, quote, this is the first time i'm hearing these numbers. the problem, the numbers are the pentagon's own numbers. the pentagon publishes these numbers about female troops. numbers the pentagon didn't apparently find alarming until this veteran ice advocacy group put them on the spot about it. the report son our website through a link. check it out. finally, the top procurement official in george w. bush's
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white house was sent to federal prison today for lying about his relationship with disgraced republican you beer lobbyist jack abramoff. he traded information for an all-expense golfing trip to scotland which mr. abramoff paid for. and now he's going to prison for his corruption as a senior white house official in the administration of george w. bush. and somewhere, some member of the bush family thinks i'm a sick, sick puppy for reporting that to you. to convert plants into components. the first-ever hs hybrid. only from lexus. ok ! ok. whoooa, heyyy ! see, the terms require that you keep the bike within this pre-determined space. if you want to take the bike out, i'm going to have to charge you a penalty. i can't really ride in this little space.
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someday, the driver will get to choose how efficient or powerful their car will be. the first ever hs hybrid. only from lexus. the most fuel-efficient of all luxury vehicles. as the republican party does its research for meaning in the political minority and looks for a path out of the wilderness, no
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more salient than sarah palin. the first marquee national name. a leader so tempted by the opportunities afforded her by that high national profile, that she gave up her job as an actual elected official, to pursue republican fame by other means. in part been she said, by campaigning for other people to be elected to office. >> i will work hard for and campaign for those who are proud to be americans and who are inspired by our ideals and won't deride them. i will support other who is seek to serve in or out of office and i don't care what party they're in or no party at all. >> for the first time since that geese-ridden resignation speech we're coming up on election day. in new jersey and virginia, both republican candidates for governor have a real potential to win elections next month. but so far neitherth of those republican gubernatorial candidates has invited governor palin to appear. this week we learned there's an upcoming statewide race where governor palin has been invited to appear and she has said yes. it's texas, where she'll be
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campaigning for current governor rick perry in his primary race against another republican, senator kay bailey hutchinson. as the nation tries to understand the republican's future and sarah palin's role in its with she's viewed as a campaign asset for some republicans. as long as they're only competing against other republicans. critical detail. good to know. ic volume decrease) well, ups can help lower warehouse costs, (music volume increases) while increasing your global reach. (volume increases, decreases) more ups technology can help bring down paperwork. (music volume increases) and ups has more shipping options than anyone. hey, it's time to seize the opportunities with ups. (backbeat swells) there, now that sounds perfect.
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fair warning, tonight's moment of geek involves poop. it's not your ordinary run of the mill poop, radioactive rabbit poop. in south central washington state the hanford nuclear reservation produced the majority of the plutonium that we used in nuclear weapons starting in world war ii and continuing to the 1980s and they produced more than 43 million cubic yards of radioactive waste and over 130 million cubic yards of contaminated soil and debris. hansford now the focus of the largest environmental clean-up in the country. part of it has to do with 50 million gallons of liquid waste from plutonium production processes that was dumped at hanford. a lack quid waste listed as radioactive. apparently, jack rabbits find them delicious. in the words of the seattle post as well jeans, quote, jooik
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rabbits routinely burrowed into those sites. they liked it, licked it. and then pooped it, leaving slightly radioactive poop on the ground. the radioactive poop the bunnies are leaving are, thanks to your stimulus dallas, being collected as low-level radioactive waste. the department of energy hired a contractor to fly a helicopter mounted with geiger counters and gps technology and they fly the chopper over the rabbit pop laiden landscape and they cover the 14 square mile area at a height of about 50 feet, flying at about 80 miles an hour and they gps mark every piece of rabbit poop and send their inlucky employees out with a map to collect it all. the nuclear poop is dumped along with all the rest of their
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mildly radioactive trash on a huge land fill that everyone hopes will just be fine someday if we seal it and cover it up enough. ahh, the nuclear age. can't you just smell the progress? joining us now, nathan hodge, reporter with wired.com national danger room and okay awe dhor of the book "a nuclear family vacation, travels in the world of atomic weaponry." thanks for talking with us. >> thanks for having me. >> i know rabbits and rabbit poop aren't the most important thing to know about nukes but i have to ask you, if this rabbit issue resonates with you? are animals part of the animal issues we have to deal with? >> well i've always thought that nuclear weaponry was far too an important subject to take seriously. what better way to remind the public than radioactive rabbit poop. this has been a factor. i visited a few years back another facility which isn't a clean-up site. part of the active nuclear project. they had a problem with too many deer. too many deer inside the wire.
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and so every year he would organize a deer hunt and the one thing you had to do after you bagged your deer was check it for radiation. >> check it for radiation. if they found radiation you couldn't take that deer home presumably? >> probably a bad idea. >> i understand. hanford has been closed since the '80s. we think about these cold war production sites as gone and forgotten. our responsibility for dealing with nuclear waste and security issues forever. how many places are there like this in the u.s.? >> during the research, during the course of researching our book, we went to ten states in five different countries, all of which are dealing with this legacy in one way, shape or form. you can go to kazakhstan where the soviets touched off hundreds of nukes and they are still trying to map out where they did all these atomic tests. another problem they had were where people went in the down and out post soviet days, and they were digging up lots of
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irradiated metal and stuff like that to sell on the open market. >> you know, i'm a big fan of your book, "nuclear family vacation" and it's been vacation reading for me. if you recommended one american nuclear site as a tourism destination, what would you recommend that people see? >> if people really want to see a great place for nuclear tourism, the nevada test site. it's close to vegas and you can get a sense of the horrific power of nuclear weaponry. there are still places where you can see the actual craters that were excavated by nuclear detonations. and there's a history of tourism there. people in the '50s actually used to go see, you know, have picnics to go watch mushroom clouds. >> wow. the big picture here when i think about hanford, all the low-level radio alaska tive dumping they're doing, it makes me wonder if we really have solved the problem of what to do with all our radioactive trash? do we have a national system for dealing with this? >> no, we don't really -- and
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more importantly, we've got to deal with the legacy in places like the pacific, marshall islands where we touched off our first hydrogen bomb test. they're still cleaning up after that and we have to deal with that legacy as well. >> nathan hodge, co-author of the book "nuclear family vacation." sorry to make you talk about poop. >> any time, rachel. >> thank you. coming up on "countdown" "c tonight, keith's blockbuster game-changing special comment on the need for health reform. and next on this show, tmi, our second installment. who can possibly follow up our first installment? who can follow him up? kent jones has found a worthy second installment competitor for tmi.
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pace yourself. be aware of your surroundings. don't ignore obvious signs. stay hydrated at all times. get plenty of fresh air and sunshine.
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a week or so ago, i asked kent jones to do a tv mixer. we found out the political headlines of the day are often populated by people almost no one had ever heard of even a year ago, people like eric cantor or liz cheney or allen grayson. kent came up with a way to familiarize ourselves with these folks.
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and it's called tmi. our first feature was texas congress louis gomert. now it's time for episode two. so kent, who are we going to meet this time? >> do you remember the representative that gave out that giant stimulus check down in georgia even though he voted against the stimulus? i want to know more about that guy. >> here we go. >> i've got my t.e.a. bags here. pick your brand. >> this is republican phil gingrey, u.s. representative of the 11th district of georgia, a self-described pro life ob-gyn who's delivered more 5,200 babies. turns out dr. phil is an actual birther. in 2002, gingrey delivered himself into politics and in a happy coincidence was elected in the same part of georgia newt gingrich used to represent. gingrich, gingrey? close enough for government work. since entering congress, he's never shied away from making house calls. >> we're standing right outside
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one of the offices of speaker nancy pelosi. but she's not here. i've been knocking on the door and i've gotten no response. she's on vacation. congress unfortunately left last friday for a five-week so-called recess, whatever you want to call it. and went away from this body, this house, representing the people doing nothing to bring down the price of gasoline. >> on the iraq troop surge, dr. phil was a surgeon. >> what indeed are we going to save our troops for? working the rope lines at fourth of july parades? helping senior citizens cross the street? what we're doing with this resolution is not a salute to g.i. joe, it's a capitulation to jihadist joe. >> he's pro gun at home, too. even at town hall meetings. >> people are bringing guns to these public meetings. why? >> they may have every right to do that. >> why are people coming armed to public meetings?
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>> well, chris, if they have the right to do that, i have no fear of it. >> do you think people should come armed to public meetings to discuss health care or not? >> i would think that they should exercise their rights under the second amendment. >> when it comes to health care, dr. phil has a white coat and you don't. >> mr. speaker, if these voices are not enough to get his attention, maybe my white coat will. and i yield back. >> and in fact, dr. phil finds the whole idea of health care reform hilarious. >> 14,000 people are losing their health insurance every day, not because of the cost of health insurance. they're losing it because they lost their jobs. >> and whatever you do, don't blame the insurance companies. >> people do not want that public option. i truly believe that we have the best health care system in the world. it's not perfect, but this business of turning it over to the federal government to try to make it perfect is quite honestly asinine. >> asinine is exactly how some of his conservative colleagues
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would describe dr. phil's rogue comments to "politico" back in january. he said, quote, i mean it's easy if you're sean hannity or rush limbaugh or even sometimes newt gingrich to stand back and throw bricks. you don't have to try to do what's best for your people and your party. whoa, call 911. this is a career emergency! dr. phil then went on rush's show to kiss it and make it all better. >> i clearly put my foot in my mouth on some of my comments and i just wanted to tell you rush and all of our conservative giants who help us so much to maintain our base and grow it and get back this majority that i regret those stupid comments. >> physician, heal thyself. >> even limbaugh can't take him seriously. okay, okay. >> all right, doctor. wrap it up. >> thank you. that was excellent. cocktail moment for you. you know the boy in balloon saga all over tv?
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the family in colorado had a helium powered spaceshipy looking balloon in their backyard. they reported their 6-year-old son climbed in the balloon and accidentally floated away. as we all know now, after five hours of frantic news coverage, the little boy was not in the balloon at all. he was hiding at home in the attic the whole time. now, of course, there are suspicions that the whole thing was maybe a hoax. nobody knows. but today's cocktail moment, i think is the most perfect ending there could have ever been to this story. today on not one, but two network morning shows, the little boy who everybody thought was in the balloon but wasn't, committed an incident of media justice by getting on live national network television and barfing twice. yeah, i swear. >> maybe it had enough force to pull itself out. i don't know. >> mom, i'm going to vomit.

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